>The elusive wool eating moth larva are shy little guys and it is hard to see them at work, but I have found them damaging a wool area rug. This rug was in a room that was used regularly, but it was rolled up and everyday dust and dirt made it a perfect home for moths.
They are hard to see up close with the camera because the largest one was no more that 1/4 of an inch long. There were more moth larva on this 3×5 foot rug, but as soon as I tried to get a closer look they disappeared into the fibers. These little guys were not that old, a few days at the most. They had not eaten enough wool yet to make any serious damage, but it wouldn’t have taken much longer for them to do damage.
When you are not using your rugs get them cleaned before storing them, even if you are leaving them rolled up in a spare room. Moths don’t care which room you put them in or if it is only for a month. They want a food supply for their larva to eat when they hatch.
I have written a lot of blogs about moth damage, but it was after the larva had eaten away a lot of the wool fibers. On Saturday we picked up a large Chinese rug from the Oak Bay area that had the beginnings of moth damage. Now when you inspect the back edges of your rug you will have a better idea what to look for.
As you can see the damage is very slight, but after a few weeks the larva can eat several inches and you wouldn’t know it until you vacuumed and a hole appeared.
Whenever we find any evidence of moth larva activity we have to put your rug through our non-toxic moth treatment. The moth eggs are too small to see with the naked eye and the female moth can lay up to a hundred eggs at one time. There is no way of knowing how many eggs have hatched or how many are waiting to hatch.
Contrary to popular myth moth eggs do not go dormant for months like flea eggs. After a few weeks of not having the ideal hatching conditions they die, but again there is no way to tell if the eggs are still alive. That is why we must do our moth treatment to all rugs with any signs of moth activity. We cannot have cross contamination to our shop or another rug, plus it isn’t good business to send a rug home and have the moth larva hatch and eat the rug.
If you can catch the moth damage early enough there is no visible damage to your rug. Remember a clean rug doesn’t attract moths, so get your rug cleaned professionally every year or two, vacuum your entire rug often and check under the edges (4-6 inches) for the starting of moth activity.
If you do find moth activity call us and we will come pick up your rug and start our moth treatment right away. 250-590-6210/1-800-886-2802. Or if your rug is small you can bring it to our place on 4144 Wilkinson at Interurban.
>It is very sad when we get in an area rug that has been infested by moths. For some rugs it is just a bit of minor damage, for others it can be an all out free buffet and the whole family shows up.
This video is of a small Gabbeh area rug that has somewhat minor, but noticeable, moth damage, and a moth larva caught in the act. I do apologize for the blurriness of the video. I was trying to get all the action that was happening and not paying attention to what I was doing with the camera.
THE BEST WAY TO PREVENT THIS IS TO HAVE YOUR RUGS CLEANED BEFORE STORING THEM. No matter how short of a period. It only takes one pregnant female moth to lay 50+ eggs and your rug is a haven.
ALSO TO VACUUM THE ENTIRE RUG OFTEN.
Moth’s cannot survive on a clean rug, they need dirt, dust, food spills, and for the rug to be undisturbed.
I know that it isn’t easy to vacuum ALL of the rug because of furniture placement, but it is worth it!
>Moths are having a grand time on people’s rugs this year. We have a few rugs in lately that got moth damage in the last few months. This is my third blog about Moth’s. I will remind every rug owner to vacuum the entire rug. The part of the rug that is under furniture is prime real estate for moth larvae to feed on. A yearly professional cleaning and a monthly vacuum is the best defense against wool’s number one enemy. Plus check underneath the rug at least six inches. This picture shows moth damage on the back of the rug. The moth larvae can feed there undetected until one day you vacuum the rug and a bunch of the fibers are sucked up. The damage on this rug was caught in time that no repairs had to be done and there was no visible damage to the top of the rug. This shows how slight the damage can be and also how sneaky the moths can be. They do not care where their food source is, just that they have one so they can survive. Another reason the spring and autumn cleaning are so important. Out of sight does not equal peace of mind. Yes it is a pain and a hassle, but it can save your furniture and precious area rugs.
When this rug came in to the shop I was sad and excited. Sad because this rug could not be saved the damage was too severe. The rug was rolled up in a basement for awhile unprotected and the moth’s had a new home. I was excited because this rug didn’t just have moth larvae casings it has live larvae. Some were newly hatched because they were still clear and the older ones were the colour of the wool they had been eating. By the time I took pictures the larvae had disappeared into the fibers, they are shy and don’t like their pictures taken.:) All the blue sand like particles is the larva’s excrement and the flat rice looking pieces are the empty moth larvae casings (where they hatched from). This is only a few inches of the rug, the moth larva were all over it in different clumps of sections. Sometimes if the damage is only in one area we can repair it by trimming it off, yes some of the rug is lost but it would of still been usable. This is done after we do our moth treatment and do a thorough cleaning. Click to read more about moths and their life cycle and how to prevent them and what to do if you find that you have an infestation. Thanks for reading, RugloverMary
Today I got very excited on the inside and a little excited on the outside when I was doing my visual inspection of a British India area rug today. It is spooky how I seem to zoom in on moth casings. Not only was there lots of moth casings there was a live larvae!! It seemed to be newly hatched because it was still clear and very small. I couldn’t find it again to snap a picture of it. It hid back into the rug when I pulled out some fibers. The rug was sadly sent for disposal. A little tiny worm like rug eater got my passion stirring. The pictures show some of the moth-eaten damage and their excrement. If you have an area rug that is under a piece of furniture that you cannot vacuum under, you might want to move the furniture and look for rice shaped objects. They will be the colour of you area rug and there maybe lots of concentrated sand looking dirt. Luv-A-Rug can help you if you find moth evidence on your are rug.
I told the client to go home and inspect their other rugs and woolens for moth activity. If you would like to know more about moths visit our website www.luvarug.com.
Onto an unrelated topic. Yesterday I was waiting for my bus and at the bus stop I saw two purple flowers growing in the grass. They stirred something in me so I took a couple of photos and then tweaked them. As I looked at them I thought ‘beauty in chaos’ since there were no other flowers near by just some weeds and garbage. With it being an anniversary of 911 it seem appropriate to see beauty surrounded by chaos. That is all I want to write today so…….
Thank you for reading, RugloverMary